The Q4 Facebook Advertising Budget Strategy
During the holiday season, maximizing opportunities in front of customers that are most likely to buy is the most important optimization activity a retailer can do.
One of the biggest concerns we hear from brands advertising on Facebook is:
How should I approach Q4 during the holiday shopping rush and allocate spend?
“When it comes to Q4 – between now and the end of October you will want to test various call to actions (CTAs) with your target audience – so that you will have a set of 2 to 5 CTAs that you know perform well and you feel confident rotating in your Dynamic Product ad campaigns during the holiday season,” Nii A. Ahene, COO at CPC Strategy said.
“Once you’ve established these winning CTAs you can focus your time and energy on shifting spend among your ad sets and segments that perform the best from your catalog in terms of conversion.”
Pro-Tip: Data gathered from the performance of campaign segments (against the same creative) can help advertisers make informed decisions on where to allocate spend based on the metric they are trying to drive (For example: ROI vs. Traffic vs. CTR)
Below is an example of what a monthly Dynamic Product ad campaign would look like at launch.
- Here we’ve allocated a $1,200 daily budget evenly across mobile and desktop channels to ensure an even rotation of our ad dollars across devices.
- We then segment the audience by recency and activity type to allocated $100 to each of these ad sets, and launch 1 or 2 of our winning CTAs as ads against these segments.
“As conversion data rolls in we shift daily budgets to segments that perform better in terms of conversion,” Ahene said.
“In this example, we shifted budget from desktop to mobile, in the 1-3 day segments for both “add to carts” and “product viewers”, Ahene said.
“Our overall daily spend is still $1,200 per day, but we’ve reduced the budget for the segments that do not perform well and increased budget for the segments that do.”
If advertisers have already tested themes and CTAs, during the prior split testing period they can be somewhat assured that the ads they put in front of these segments are going to perform well.
Prior testing allows advertisers to focus on the second phase of their strategy: to shift budgets accordingly as opposed to figuring out what CTA to use and wasting valuable adverting dollars in the critical Q4 period.
“During critical sales or promotional periods (be it Q4 or in the industry-specific peak time), the successful themes identified through this process can be rolled out against clearly established segments, allowing marketers to focus their time on budget allocation, rather than ad copy testing – giving them the best chance to see a strong ROI from their activation campaigns,” Ahene said.
If you would like to learn more about how to A/B test CTAs and other creative – check out the blog post below:
Facebook Advertising Budget: Expert Insight
We ask the experts: What results have you seen from implementing this Facebook budget allocation strategy?
“You’re essentially starting off with an even budget across all your ads and as you begin to see some ads perform better or worse, you want to shift the budget appropriately, Stephen Kerner, Manager, Retail Search at CPC Strategy.
“If one of your ads is performing well – you want to expand the reach of that ad, give it more dollars to spend so you can get a better return. On the other side, if you’re seeing a poor CTR, then you want to take money away from that ad because it’s not giving you the return you need.”
“By shifting the budget around, you really give the ads an opportunity to get in front of more people and drive a better conversion rate and better ROI.”
“The biggest takeaway is that you want to split the process in half. One part of the process is identifying the themes and the CTAs – that’s an exercise by itself. The other process is figuring out which segments work the best,” Ahene said.
“As long as you have an order of operations and you’re testing one thing at a time – you are gonna put yourself in the best situation for actually winning. It’s very challenging to test two things at once which is why we focus on ad creative in the first stage and then move over to segmentation and shifting budget.”
“If you can get into this kind of routine – you are going to be well positioned to take advantage of the traffic that exists on Facebook – especially when you are talking about activation campaigns.”
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